Formula 1

Caterham set to evaluate driver line-up

Kovalainen could be set for a return (©GettyImages)
Kovalainen could be set for a return (©GettyImages).

Caterham are to evaluate its driver line-up after the 2013 season after some suggestions the team is regretting its decision to replace the experienced Heikki Kovalainen for this year.

Indeed speculation has linked Kovalainen with a possible return even before the end of this season replacing the under-performing Giedo van der Garde.

Van der Garde rubbished the claims saying he was a "water-tight" contract to stay at the team for the entire season.

Team boss Cyril Abiteboul seems to agree:

 "I do not regret choosing two young drivers," he told the Dutch magazine Formule1.

"At the end of the season it will show whether we have done well, but they have not disappointed me.

"Maybe a little more experience would have done us no harm, but on the other hand a better car would also have helped them. The knife cuts both ways," added Abiteboul.

In other driver news Pastor Maldonado is denying he is being lined up as a replacement for Kimi Raikkonen should the Finn make the switch from Lotus to Red Bull in 2014.

The Venezuelan, who has been at Williams since 2011, told Speed Week: "I have other problems to think about than next year.

"We need to be competitive again, and that's all that matters right now."

Indeed the biggest hurdle seems to be the backing Maldonado brings to F1, it is understood he (Maldonado) was brought in by Williams as part of a deal with the Venezuelan oil giant PDVSA.

It is also understood Lotus sponsor Total would be unhappy sharing space on the 2014 Lotus livery with another oil company.

Maldonado said: "I will continue here (Williams).

"Especially since the fabulous news that Pat Symonds is coming. His achievements speak for themselves.

"You'll see, soon Williams will be back (competitive) again."

Maldonado was also at Silverstone this week to test the new Pirelli tyres coming for next week's Hungarian Grand Prix, speaking after his stint he said he was frustrated by the limits that were put in place by the FIA on running current drivers at the test.

"We couldn't change anything on the car. Nothing," he told Brazil's Agencia Estado.

"Will the new tyres help me go back to my old driving style? I hope so, but we don't know.

"Honestly, we have bigger problems (than tyres) with this car."

 

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Formula 1

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